03 October 2008

Walkabout

I'm really becoming a little scatterbrained with my posts. Every day I have things in my head that I intend to tell you, but only about half of those things make it on here. Sometimes that's okay, because what I wanted to write wasn't all that important. But other times things stick in my head until I type them.
This for instance. Evidence for how awesome the new Creative Writing teacher is. That first day when he came into class, he told us how he'd looked through the syllabus and was a little surprised by some of the things he'd seen. Our teacher had wanted to take us to an ancient bathhouse, from back when Spain was Muslim, and get massages so we could get inspired.
Enrique reenacted his reaction upon reading that, and then told us that maybe it wouldn't be so inspiring to see our teacher in swim trunks or a speedo or whatever it is that they wear here. "What's going to happen?" he asked. "Are we just going to start spouting poetry?" and then he began to recite in English, "Let us go then, you and I. . ." and I had to put my hand over my mouth because he said the first several lines of The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, by T.S. Eliot. I would never have expected to hear that here. A few days later he abruptly switched from Spanish to English to deliver the opening of Romeo and Juliet in a far deeper voice than the one he usually uses: "Two households, both alike in dignity. . ." It's just so strange to hear!
See, that wasn't anything epic. But this next bit is.
Okay so this afternoon I was feeling a little lazy, having sat around the apartment all day watching archived Red Sox games on mlb.tv and facebooking. I was a little sore from running last night and I thought a walk would be a good way to work that out. I hopped on a bus down to Sol to take pictures and check the pubs' schedules for Red Sox games.
Just before we pulled in to the final bus stop at the edge of Sol, I saw a couple of newlyweds and their wedding photographer. I thought it would make for an interesting picture, two tiny figures in black and white in front of the gargantuan buildings around Banco de EspaƱa, so when the bus finally stopped, I walked back to try and catch them. I didn't take many pictures of them because the whole setup wasn't as picturesque as I'd hoped, so then I walked down to the Prado, which is nearby. Along the way, I got the finger from a homeless man (or was it a woman?) brushing his (or her?) teeth in a fountain.
Eventually I headed back to Sol, which is really the center of this town at night. It wasn't night yet, but the light was poor enough that I wasn't going to get any good candid pictures, so I put the camera away and just walked. No baseball tonight at Dubliners or O'Connell St, I found. To pass the time I walked through the plaza, listening to the street musicians.
To my surprise (and delight), I heard bagpipes! Of course I followed the sound, ending up in front of a guy in a kilt. I'm not sure the Spanish really appreciate bagpipe music, but I like to think I do. I stood there, listening to him, for probably a half hour. I saw a drunk man come up next to him and start clapping and stomping the beats to the songs, and then, horrifyingly, he began to sing. That was about when the piper decided to call it a night.
As he was putting away his pipes, I went to give him some money and asked him how often he plays in Sol. I expected to hear a Scottish or Irish accent, but he was Kiwi! You can find the most random people in Madrid, seriously.
Also, I stayed up too late the other night (this was before the Red Sox game, actually) and took the Jeopardy online test for the college tournament, and, despite my certainty that I'd absolutely crashed and burned, I got an e-mail today saying that I passed and have an appointment for the next round of tryouts on Sunday, November 2 at 11:30 am in Chicago. Now I just have to find a way to get there.

3 comments:

Becky Lundgren said...

>> I got an e-mail today saying that I passed and have an appointment for the next round of tryouts on Sunday, November 2 at 11:30 am in Chicago. Now I just have to find a way to get there. <<
Right. In your spare time. ROTFL

amor en libertad said...

walking alone in madrid can be nice

Anonymous said...

is this called walkabout because that's what you attempted to help me with on cashcab but failed?